If you haven’t yet visited Albert Mispel’s website, you’re missing out on a treat. Here's an extract to whet your appetite.....

In the more remote posting I had in the Gulf, the previous teacher had shot himself in the toilet. The teacher who took my place at the same school was a pious Christian who spurned the demon drink. For that reason (and maybe others) the Patrol Officers and Diddymen avoided his place. He tried to attract them by getting in some beer. They still didn't visit him. I was told that it got too much and he drank himself into a such state that he had to be carried out with alcoholic poisoning.

The highlands had plenty of stories and were far more attractive than the Gulf. In the end I did get more European company. In fact I had 2 Europeans on my staff at my last school, Kapakamarigi in the Eastern Highlands. I finally went on long leave (6 months) and never went back.

I did not accumulate many European friends there because I didn't meet many. I keep in touch with only a few people such as Dan Mannix and Kevin Lock, whom I knew in the Gulf. I do not follow the fortunes or misfortunes of the country in any depth and am not sure who the Prime Minister is.

However, the 1st few years in the Gulf are stamped in my soul as the most formative years of my life. Most of my present attitudes towards people, art and the world start there.

I spent all my New Guinea superannuation on a full time computer course and have followed that path ever since.


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